The Language of Film:

Theme

 

Theme—Themes, or what the film is implicitly or explicitly “about,” become the foundation for a film analysis since they point to the main ideas in a movie. Asking the following questions can help you understand a film’s theme:

 

    1. Who are the central characters?
    2. What do they represent in themselves and in relation to each other? The importance of individuality in society? Human strength or human compassion? Human fallibility?
    3. How do their actions create a story with some meanings or constellation of meanings?
    4. Does the story emphasize the benefits of change or endurance?
    5. What kind of life or what actions does the film wish you to value or criticize, and why?
    6. If there is not a coherent message or story, why not?
    7. How does the movie make you feel at the end? Happy? Depressed? Confused? And why? (how does the director manipulate your response to the film?)